WORDEATER 80 STAFF
Donna Aiello, Christian Bemal, Tricia Concialdi, Jennifer Jay, Jeff Hicks, Dina Procenti,
Mark Schillinger, Lena Vigna
In order to get a selection published in this issue, four of the above had to vote for acceptance.
For the award winners, only John Stobart is responsible.
Manuscripts or cover designs for
WORDEATER 81 & 82
must be submitted to John Stobart
in room C-1069 by:
September 25, 1992
November 20, 1992
Maunuscripts should be typed
and will not be returned.
$5 to Christian BCTnal
$5 to Jeff Hicks
$5 to Heather Morrissey
$5 to Kevin Olchawa
$5 to Dave Tieman
$5 to Jonathan Wolff
$5 to Justin Gale
$5 to Amy Guertin
$5 to Derrick Hasseit
$5 to Ryan Seeley
$20 to Shellie Smith
September 25, 1992
November 20, 1992
All copyrights are retained by the authors, and materials will not be reprinted
without their permission.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
1 Summer Time -Diane Drick
1 The One I Love To Hate To Love -Kevin Olchawa
1 S tarving Environment -David Tieman
1 I Turned the Comer and Saw IL -Tricia Concialdi
1 Rain -Diane Drick
2 Like Father, Unlike Son -Justin Gale
3 Reprieve -Dimitra Barnard
3 Late for Class -Christian Bemal
3 Eternity -Kevin Olchawa
4 Tracy's Favorie Martyr -Steev Custer
4 Think Upon This - Derrick Hassert
4 I Wrote My Words -Steev Custer
4 Spirit Shake -Christian Bemal
4 Let me undress you -Laura Offrink
4 I Stand -Janine Passehl
5 Lemon -Jeff Hicks
5 She -DonicaRampa
5 Oh, So Strange. Oh, So Clear. -Ryan Seeley
6 Hunter of Lavender -David Tieman
6 Gangland Suggestion -Jonathan Wolff
6 She Held Me -Kevin Olchawa
6 Excuseless -Jameson Turner
6 Upper Peninsula -Heather Morrissey
7 He's Not the Keeping Kind -DonicaRampa
7 He Was -Christian Bemal
7 Tom Spring Dress - Gale Stewart
8 Lost in Oblivion -Laura Offrink
9 A Symbiotic Relationship -Jeff Hicks
9 Politically Correct -Kevin Olchawa
9 Inkblot -David Tieman
9 Pleasure -Heather Morrissey
9 Still Tornados -Kevin Olchawa
9 Let's Not Spend This Day -Tricia Concialdi
9 Distant HammCTS -Jonathan Wolff
10 I Remember So Much -AmyGuertin
10 Take My Hand -Derrick Hassert
10 Oral Acupuncture -Christian Bemal
11 Thoughts of You -Janine Passehl
II Crime -DonicaRampa
III Would Do It Once -Kevin Olchawa
11 The Rose Bud - Dimitra Bamard
11 Hot Lips -Laura Offrink
11 Rocking Chair Rheumatism -David Tieman
12 Stiff Embankments -Jonathan Wolff
12 Mask -Heather Mossissey
12 Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah -Tricia Concialdi
12 Mystical Monday -David Tieman
13 The Hunters -Mike Oesterle
14 With Tears -Christiian Bemal
15 Leave Me Be -Janine Passehl
15 "What are you starving for?" - Steev Custer
15 Bridging the Gap -Laura Offrink
15 Waterfall -Jonathan Wolff
15 Shadows -Kevin Olchawa
16 Won Mourning Beyond Ewe -Christian Bemal
16 ... and the Poems Became SongsToday -David Tieman
16 They is Friends -Christian Bemal
16 As I Look In Your Eyes - Laura Offrink
17 Ridiculed and Scomed -Jonathan Wolff
17 You Say You Love Me -Jeff Hicks
17 RN -DonicaRampa
18 Overheard in a Cornfield - Ann Collett
20 Cool Off -David Tieman
20 I've Seen Her Moan -Christian Bemal
20 Take - Kevin Olchawa
20 I Wait with Hope -Kevin Olchawa
20 As I Look Around -Laura Offrink
20 Speak Without a Thought to -Jonathan Wolff
21 Melvin's Eyelids -Steev Custer
21 Far Away Friend -Christian Bemal
21 Implant Dressing -Christian Bemal
21 Bitten by the Snake -David Tieman
22 Blowing Harder and Harder -Laura Offrink
22 My Leg -AmyGuertin
22 Sweet Lute -David Tieman
22 Just for You, My Sweet -Derrick Hassert
23 Pain -Janine Passehl
23 Let's Build Something -Jonathan Wolff
23 Sadness -Kevin Olchawa
23 I Am Not a Demanding Person -Tricia Concialdi
24 A Ghost Story -Kevin Olchawa
24 Sleep Now -Christian Bemal
24 The Covers Enfold Me -Laura Offrink
24 Uninspired -Steev Custer
25 As I Drank with the Albatross -Jeff Hicks
25 Transfusion -Heather Morrissey
25 Inspiration -Jonathan Wolf f
26 Modem Gaze Blazing -David Tieman
26 Somebody, Please,Listen -AmyGuertin
26 I Stand with My Toes in the Sand -Tricia Concialdi
26 Mother of All -Christian Bemal
27 PuEmitDnoces -Christian Bemal
27 Green and Red -David Tieman
27 An Artist -Kevin Olchawa
27 Mostiy for Julian -Steev Custer
28 Scum Love -Jeff Hicks
28 Trite Meanderings -Jonathan Wolf f
28 In a Way -Kevin Olchawa
28 Tribe of Insolence -David Tieman
Neighbors out washing their cars
Teenagers mowing lawns
Driving with the top down
Eating ice cream cones
Swimming at the beach
Cook-outs in the patio
I wish it would never end.
THE ONE I LOVE TO HATE TO LOVE
The one I love to hate to love
stands staring at me nakedly
Spiraling images swell in the pit of my stomach
oh, that fire
It hurts my head
Kaleidoscope images mesh and mingle in my mind
When it felt so good-
it felt like hell
When it felt like hell-
it felt so good
it knows what to tell
My heart . . .
it has a soul to sell
Ripped in two I falter
Hct commanding stare knows-
exacdy the string to dangle
My sense is strong-
but my desire is devastating
it stops me from hesitating
Fw tonight I sleep in Hell-
wiih the one I love-
Dying amongst mirages of twinkle Supermen.
I TURNED THE CORNER AND SAW IT
I turned the comer and saw it
I could smell the fresh blood.
He tried to get up when he noticed me.
I didn't move.
Frozen with a mixture of repulsion and fear.
I wanted to help,
but I just couldn't
"Please . . . "
He gurgled up at me.
I began to reach out my hand,
and then pulled it back
when I realized he had nothing to grab it with.
He looked up at me
with those two big holes,
pleading with me.
Then he began to convulse
and blood spurted out of his mouth,
and landed on my dress.
He was still.
I turn to leave, maybe to get help
and feel a hand on my shoulder-
I whirl around.
Satan takes my hand
and welcomes me to Hell.
Pattoing down my windowpane
Waking me up
Then lulling me back to sleep
with its steady rhythm
Making me want to stay in bed
And listen to its genUe rhythm.
LIKE FATHER, UNLIKE SON
"Ta-da," Mark opened the door, and flicked on the
light, showing his new lady friend the room. "Come in please,
just for a minute. I need to get a couple of things, and then we
can go." He extended his hand.
The woman looked at him and smiled,"Sure, Mark,
but let's hurry. I don't want to miss the show." She smiled and
leaned against the doorway. A spiral of amber hair fell along
her slender face. Raising the glass she had kept from down-
stairs, she said, "I think I need a refill."
"Don't worry. I have some in the room." Mark
assisted her into his room, and closed the door.
"Wow," said the woman as she looked around, "it's
kind of big for one person."
"Yes, it's a deluxe. There was a mix-up with my
reservations; so I get the extra space for free." Maik stared at
the perfect figure in front of him. The back of her short skirt
revealed long, smooth legs, wrapped in cream colored hosiery.
"Mark?" said the woman as she turned around.
"Yes, Star," he replied politely.
"I think 111 use the bathroom while you get whateer
"No problem. Remember though, don't take too
"Ok." Star giggled as she set her glass down on the
dresser and made her way into the bathroom.
Mark took a deep breath to calm his nerves and
moved to the mirror over the dresser. He straightened his tie
and retucked his button down shirt Leaning closer, he covered
his face with his warm, sweaty hands, and breathed deep once
more. He looked at his face and considered how handsome he
was compared to other men. He saw a man with a square jaw,
an oversized nose, and dark, curly hair all thanks to Italian
He touched his face, feeling all that made him
different and unique, all the while staring into his large, dark
eyes. He brushed across his right cheek and stopped, fingering
the jagged ridge, the soft, pink skin that forever marred his
complexion. Trembling, he thought of the bastard that marked
him, his father.
Out of the comer of Mark's eye, something moved in
the mirror. His deep thoughts vanished while his head swung
right to spot the intruder. He slapped Star's drinking glass to
the floor, spilling the partially melted ice but not breaking the
glass. A distant laughter filtered around the room, yet Mark
The bathroom door opened and Star stepped ouL She
regarded Mark strangely. "What's wrong?"
Mark saw the beautiful woman and instantly calmed
down. "I . . a . . a . Jaiocked over your glass, that's all." He
smiled and bent over. Picking it up, he placed it back on the
"Oh," she sighed, "that's fine I think Tve had loo
much to drink anyway." She slumped down on the edge of the
"No, no," said Mark, completely regaining his
composure. "1 have a complimentary bottle of champagne in
the fridge that needs drinking. Come on, the night is still
young." Mark flew off to the kitchen, grabbed the bottle and
Upon returning, Mark found Star lying down on the
bed. Her arms were sprawled out, and she was only slightly
"Star, what's wrong?" Marie said, faindy grinning.
"I think I had too much too drink." Star's voice was
slow and slurred. "I don't think we can go to the show."
"That's ok. Star." Marie poured a drink, and shot it
down. "I saw it already." He poured another, and set the other
glass and botde on the dresser. Then, he moved towards Star,
putting his arms around her, smelling her wonderful perfume,
centering her on the bed. To Mark, she was the most beautiful
woman he had ever seen. Her smile, scent, skin, hair, figure,
everything was perfect He wanted her. He loved her, and he
wanted her to love him.
"Star, do you love me?" Mark began to undo his belt
with one hand, while carressing her thigh with the other hand.
"No." She reacted to his touching trying to resist
Mark grabbed her arm and pinned it under her knee.
He could not understand why he needed her, but he had to have
her. He ripped her blouse open, acting as if it were instinct that
drove him. He opened the clasp of her bra, feeling her soft
while breasts, and pink nipples. He smothered her with kisses,
while chanting, "Love me, love me, love me."
She was barely resisting, completely vulnerable. He
pulled her pantyhose completely off. He rubbed them in his
hands. They felt so soft and smelled so sweet He wrapped
them around his hand and brushed it against his face. Through
them he could not feel his scar.
Mark looked at the helpless woman on the bed and
anger in his mind vanished. He felt sorry for the woman. In
his childhood and in his nightmares, he was on her side among
the weak and helpless. In Mark's eyes she changed. Her legs
were not slender and were lined with veins. Her figure was
wider and shorter than he had once imagined. She was less
beautiful yet more human. Mark realized what he was doing,
and what he would have done,
"Oh God, Tm sorry."
Laughter again erupted, this time louder, more
sinister, and directly behind him. The lights flicked off as
Mark whirled around. He could see a dark figure near the
"Who are you?" snapped Mark. The figure stopped
laughing. He could hear it breathing.
"You were doing so well, Mark." The voice was deep
and slow, sending chills down Mark's back. "Don't stop now.
You're about to hit a home run."
UKE FATHER, UNLIKE SON (continued)
"Who are you?" Marie thought he recognized the
voice of the figure, but it was impossible. The voice had died
twenty years ago.
"You know damn well who I am." The figure smiled
as his remaining teeth gleamed in the dull moonlight "Now go
on and get back to your fun like a good little boy. And
remember, I always watch you." The figure turned to leave.
"No, father." Mark stood defiantly. He realized his
father was the cause of the pain, and he wanted to be least like
"What?" The figure stopped.
"I will not rape this woman. I'm not like you."
"What? And I thought I raised a man." The figure's
voice was angry. "I'll finish her then. Step aside, boy." The
figure walked towards his son, still just a black shadow. Mark
stood his ground,. "Move away, boy, or I'll have to play with
you like I did in the good ol' days."
Nightmares resurfaced in Mark's memory. He
remembered abuse, hate, and most of all, molestation. He
stepped away to let his father pass. Then the insane laughter
came from the shadow again. Mark clutched his head,and felt
"No!" Mark cried out, grabbing the bottle on the
dresser, and slamming it down on his father's head. The bottle
exploded into thousands of shards. The figure reeled back in
pain, and fell to the floor. The bastard voice slowly died
Mark's vision spun as and he fell to the floor com-
pletely stunned. His head throbbed with immense pain as if he
had been struck with a hammer. Mark felt the botde neck, still
clasped in his hand. He felt his head and brushed out shards of
Finally, he was rid of the evil inside of him. His life
would be his lo control.
Mark shook his head, and regained vision. Star stood
over him, pointing a pistol to his head.
Hot hand was shaking as she said, "You raped me,
"No!" Marie raised up. "Pleas..."
The gun exploded as Mark's vision turned red, then
black. In the distance, a deep voice sang,
"Star light. Star bright,
make my son the victim tonight"
Your touch is softer than the breeze that rustles the leaves and
blows gendy through my hair. It caresses my heart and sheds
light into the shadows where my fears Uved, drawing out the
tears, ever so tenderly, releasing them without allowing them to
threaten me. Silently I weep, secure in the knowledge that you
will allow no harm to come to my soul. Gende release, a
momentary reprieve from hidden despair. Safe in the hollow
of your arms, sheltered by your simple love.
LATE FOR CLASS
highlights cast in the murky water
in my shadow
life comes out
with a smile
The sun shone brightly on the barren cloud
I stood up gingerly to look around
A bird flew by and said "Good Morning"
Shaking my head I whispered I'm learning
I spent the day molding the cloud like clay
The night came and took my innocence away
A bat flew down and perched on my shoulder
It said, "Someday you may be bolder"
With that I took a giant running leap
For my soul I thought I would always keep
I stood up gingerly to look around
The sun only shone brightly on a barren cloud
TRACY'S FAVORITE MARTYR
Down the hall and to my right, there's a door,
but it doesn't open.
The walls are lined with horror picture windows
which are made from shatter-proof glass.
Search the tiles on the floor forever, tr^ doors
are never to be found.
And the ladder on the left wall leads to a dime-
sized hole on the ceiling. But I can only squeeze
And just when I thought I was trapped, I notice walls
made of papo"; and I think I have . . .
Yes, I do, an HB lead pencil.
So I go to woric, scritching and scratching lines
and lines of late night pain until finally
there's a gap large enough to squeeze myself
And I notice down the hall, and to my right,
there's a door, but it doesn't open.
THINK UPON Tins
The gains of hypocrisy
But the blessings
And the bliss
Ponder, I pray.
Cryptic as I may be.
inhaling the afternoon
alive outsides flutter and mince
wasps in the black blinds
steamed up from the morning dew
music at a far gazebo
floating massages sent in divine sound
rest on my chest
and I wish we were together
LET ME UNDRESS YOU
Let me undress you
with my eyes
and my hands
with my teeth
and my tongue
Let me get pleasure
from the many facets
of your imagination
And give it back
with my many
erotic ideas of old
Let them encase you
in constant orgasm
While I help you
relive your wildest fantasies
I WROTE MY WORDS
I wrote my words, and I shaded my words with a jet black
leaded pencil. I knew if no one read them, no one could hate
them, and so there were no more.
kept company by
Oh oval lemon
Not perfectly round
Swinging on a branch
Not niaking a sound
I reach up and pull you
You're bumpy and smooth
All warmed by the sun
You're flavor to soothe
I bring you in the house
To make some lemonade
To drain out your juices
From the slice of my blade
I put you on the table
And go and get my blade
But you roll off the table
And hide as in a raid
Oh little lemon
Where did you go?
Are you hiding imder the couch?
Or cowering behind the stove?
I look around to find you
But only time will tell
For when you start rotting
I'll find you by your smelL
In the mirror
is the image of a woman
who is strong
A tough-minded individual
who confronts the world
to dissect and learn it-
Life is her want
Behind the image of a girl
-a mere child-
who waits for the world
to unfold before her eyes
she is firagile and innocent
Love is her want
OH, SO STRANGE. OH, SO CLEAR
Oh fretted harmonica, don't sing so blue
Just shut up
Oh fiendish haip, don't sing so silently
With gende, lilting melodies entwined in wraths of harsh
Swing swifdy between the bars
And slip into forever
Forever a canticle of caress
I slide my body next to yours
I writhe and pitch unable to twitch
My nose, and bring magic to the song of our love
With hollow lungs that sing no more
I still must praise you, though you leave me alone
While you (voicelessly morose) sing to her
Of her, with her, about her
And let me lie in my grave
"Wait for me!" you chime to me
Like an evil xylophone
(You beat me on the head in jest?)
"Wait for you?" say I
As I begin to cry
All the sad songs away
But I wait
And I sing to myself
Of love, of hate, of wanting you; my mate
And still your duet is with her
My God (ha-ha)
I think of our duet
Me so strong, for you I long
And the tune vanishes away
HUNTER OF LAVENDER
SHE HELD ME
Hunter of lavender
Pierce the flesh
Beyond our imagination
Clench your fists
At the repulsion
Of the dying squeal
Smear the hunt
On your mouth-watering canvas
She held me
hold me she said
She touched my face
touch me she said
She kissed me
kiss me she said
She lay down
Lie down with me she said
She made love to me
now leave me she said
He will be here soon.
Delinquent urban art work
repulsive say some
salvation say others
The golden age of style
The American way of death
in old cities
The aspirin wars
Got your gun?
Courtship of stupidity
every man his way
Failed language development
Wasted deadend term
Old west relived
draw and drop 'em
Good to eat
might as well not waste meat
Urban taste treat.
You, I pass you every week
I know you know Td like to speak
But what? What topic could I share?
What bit of knowledge, do I dare
Address you so informally?
What if you're a lot like me?
Bored, and wondering who will be
Your savior from this friendless.
Apathetic mental trap?
But yet again I find myself excuseless
Nothing, everything to say to you
As you walk by
Like a lonely wildflower
In the midst
Of a forest of giant, motionless white bark trees
For the sun
For the spring
To enter my roots and flow
Giving me life anf unfolding
Exposing my true beautiful
HE'S NOT THE KEEPING KIND
I know what love is, little girl
thats why I set him free-
Not because he loves you best
and wants no more of me.
You cannot capture wind
and hold it for your own
a firee spirit will wander
until its found a home.
Don't hang on
He'll nevCT stay
You'll only ground his flight
Then one day, you'll turn away
he'll be off into the night
A stubborn mule
is a stupid fool
You're going to take the fall
Trust me child, I know him well
He's not the keeping kind.
there was nothing
sitting on the vines
watching the animals
he flew away
TORN SPRING DRESS
When Francis opened her eyes, she remembered the
hospital. Like all the rooms in the hospital, hers was the same
depressing tone of gray. To her, it was a cold and forbidding
place. Not well suited for her sickly body. She would much
rather spend her final days on her farm, walking among rows
of high com. But after eighty-five years of constant beating,
her heart was tired, and her short legs could no longer walk-
She was trapped in this gray room in the E ward of the small,
community hospital. Alone, with only vague memories of hCT
daughter, Virginia, doomed for a lifetime within similar gray
When Francis's mind was clear, she thought of her
child, and how she cared for her who would always be an
infant inside. Francis thought that someday Virginia would
grow up, and they would talk and love like a perfect mother
and daughter. But that was before the two men in the car took
A knock at the door startled Francis, and before she
could call to answer, the door opened. She felt a warm surprise
when she realized the doctor had come early. She liked the
doctor. He was a kind, young man who shed happiness on her
"Hello, Mrs. Wallen," said the doctor in a cheery
voice. "How are you today?" The man picked up a clipboard
from the foot of her bed and took out a pen from his white
"Same, Doc," replied Francis with a half-hearted
The doctor smiled back, and came around the side of
the bed to take her blood pressure.
As Francis looked up at the doctor, a memory
reopened. "You know, you remind me of someone."
"Patrick, my son."
"Oh, what's he do for a living? I s he a doctor?
Francis did not answer, but just lay thwe. The
memory had closed. "Are you all right, Mrs. Wallen?" said
"Same, Doc," replied Francis, oblivious to their
The doctor finished the test, and returned to his
clipboard. "I t says here that you're scheduled for visitors
"It doesn't say." The doctor put his clipboard back
"Well, rd better get going. Other patients to see, you
"I wouldn't want to hold you up.'
"Good day, Mrs. Wallen."
Francis watched the doctor exit and the room returned
to its dull gray. She thought about him awhile, but could not
remember what had transpired. She liked the doctor, though.
During the rest of the morning Francis slept Later
she was checked by nurses, but soon Francis forgot
She lay looking through the small window. She
could only see the sky. Clouds had moved in, and the window
looked as if it was not a window at all, but a continuation of the
gray walls that surrounded her on all sides.
She closed her eyes and thought of the farm. The
gray skies of early spring only accentuated the green of the
new, sprouting grass. The hired men were working hard in the
field off in the distance, planting seeds of com and bean She
looked at her two gigantic red bams, and thought they needed
repainting this summer. The white house, her and Virginia's,
also needed retouching. The strong smell of fertilizer in the air
was the sign of the beginning of the harvest
Then the sun came out, and Francis was alive. She
tumed and saw Virginia, playing in the mud with her new
spring dress. It was half tom, revealing her chest From a
distance, Francis saw a woman, an object of beauty that would
please any man. But as Francis came closer she saw her
lifeless eyes, the alien quality that made her seem unattractive.
The sun went back behind the clouds. "Come on,
darling," said Francis as she bent down to pick up her over
grown child. She fixed her dress, and the two started back
towards the big, while house. Then, Francis noticed a black
car pulling into the driveway, and she held Virginia tighter.
The car stopped and the two men stepped out One
was tall and had a crooked smile, the other had a solemn
expression and looked at the ground. Both were wearing dark
suits. "Mrs. Wallen?" asked the man with the crooked smile.
"Yes?" Francis said hoarsely.
"We've come for Virginia."
Francis held Virginia, bowing her head on her
daughter's shoulder. She felt the soft cloth of the spring dress,
soaking up Francis's tears.
"Are you all right. Dear?" Francis thought it was
Virginia, and shot up. "Careful, Mrs. Wallen. Everything's
going to be okay." A large , comforting nurse was sitting by
her bedside, softly rubbing her bony shoulder. "It was just a
"Oh," Francis sighed,"rm fine."
"Are you sure?"
"Good, because you have visitors." The nurse patted
Francis, and got up. "They're in the lobby. I'll get them." She
smiled and left, leaving the door open.
Down the hall, Francis saw the nurse point in her
direction. Immediately behind her were the two men. The
ones who took Virginia away. Francis felt the pain in her
chest as her heart pumped vigorously. Breaths were short, and
she was shaking. As the men came closer she saw the ones
crooked smile and the other looked at the tile floor. Francis
started to mumble incoherently.
The two reached the door, and the one with the smile
said,"May we come in, sweet child? We feel your pain."
Francis could barely speak. "No."
"But please, dear. You are past your time."
"No," said Francis more defiantly.
The two men moved aside, and the nice doctor came
through. He smiled like he always did, and took off his white
jacket To Francis the doctor seemed younger. Under his
jacket he wore a tie-die shirt and dirty, flared jeans.
A memory lit, and burned like a flare in Francis's frail
mind. She said, 'Tatrick, you died in those awful clothes."
"Mother, I went down fighting social injustice in
these. I'm pjroud of them."
Francis smiled. "Same old Patrick, huh."
"I don't want to die, Patrick."
"I know. Mom, but the men are right Your life has
"I want a family again. The farm-"
"Trust me everything will be alright"
"Me trust you, after what you put in your body!"
'Tlease." Patrick held out his hand.
She did the same, and together they walked through
the two men and out of the dull, gray room.
Patrick said, "Virginia is waiting." Somehow Francis
"Did you fix her dress? It was her favorite."
"Yes, Mom. How in the world did you remember
"I don't know," said Francis, holding her son tight "I
The two men, now finished, spread their feathered
wings and took the quick way to Heaven.
Lost in oblivion
Pushed to the edge
Rocking back and forth
On the final point of no return
Yet pushing back
An affair with the unknown
A SYMBIOTIC RELATIONSfflP
A symbiotic relationship
Creating a communication upheaval
between two minds
both focused in the same direction
as if it were a mental orchestra
with both of us playing lead parts
and our memories being the background music
Waiting day after day
for the prize at the bottom of the cereal box
to find my values in a pUe of dirty socks
Give me my parole
from this grey prison cell of a town
where people talk of politics
like raw meat is sold by the pound
wandering down a moonlit path
don't step on the glass
life may be short, pleasure is sweet
don't miss a thing
take my hand
feel my heart beat
rip the cloths
of faded memories
pleading upon knees
to be brought
to the dawn
of my mind
although I pine
building papo" walls
to block the pawns
my forgotten past
bring on the cold fire
LET'S NOT SPEND TfflS DAY
Let's not spend this day
like every other holiday.
It is the same.
Another holiday to buy things,
to throw our money away on
a fancy dinner,
And whCTe are the dinner and candy now?
The cards arc tossed in a pile
in the closet,
and the flowers are dead
Too much money wasted on material things.
tonight we are going to stay home
watch some television,
talk for a while,
and eat tacos.
rip echoing gunshots.
Trees, in coincidental salvation
from the fire
Are raised in arches
to be sealed.
Life begins and continues
in the new town.
And in the mountains above
placid paths of water
Meandering into the valley below
grow angry and disgusted
Water explodes in
Raping the valley and
quiet dwellers below.
I REMEMBER SO MUCH
I remember so much.
I remember the YMCA
State Gymnastics Meet
This wasn't just any meet
This was State!
Eleven years old and I
pulled fourth on vaulL
One away from a medal.
I wanted a State medal
I think I even cried.
But you weren't there,
You were the only father
of any girl on the team
that was not there!
But bravely, eleven years old,
I held back tears
and told you,
"No big deal, it's ok."
I often wondered where you were,
that unconcious turning point
in our relationship.
I tell myself that
I really don't care.
But every so often,
a hint of hurt hovering,
what was more important to you
TAKE MY HAND
I walk along my wooded path
In the darkness of the midnight hour.
And things that don't exist in the daylight
Hear my steps and walk beside me.
We have no name, but that of night.
As the trees shed their skin
In the chilled October air.
No voice shall call my name.
For I am Solitude.
Only Darkness walks with me.
Through Life, to Death,
And leaves me alone with
Fears and thoughts of both.
Sally sat in the chair
Morris was masturbating
above the bird cage
a horse and the spider
fought for sugar
on the virgin lace
of the dining table
nobody noticed the
Lv. was god yet
and Lee came running
from the kitchen
with hot spice pie
pepper burned the ceiling
Mother and Father
were hiding in the bedroom
eating scraps of fat
while their Siamese child
squealed in hunger
glinting his nocturnal
eye in the sparse light of his crib
Pam and Al were growing
under the stairs
naughty little touchings
bestilled by man
I had just woke up
the nurse brought me head
David cackled hymns
and sermons of political
disgust and distrust
this morning tea was green
Alice missed me
and Simon nevw said
so Martin jumped
in the cold park
at night with his
for all to see
how he ran I can't
retell, but they
with their evening
slow seances I
remember as an infant
with wet paint
sneaking through everyone
nostrils and Paul
spilt alcohol under
his soft canvas cot
where the scorpion
always hid because
police beat his son
in a violent kind of fashion
THOUGHTS OF YOU
twisted images in the
of my mind,
my thoughts and
picking them apart
of you remain.
these are the
Little Faith meet Cheery Smile
Hand in Hand they walked
they metamorposed as they spoke
(they changed the more they talked)
Little Faith became Believer
after not so very long
he created Honest Love from
As they danced to her
They laughed together
and were happy
Till Reality kicked in their door
Believer was attacked by Fear
Mistrust held Love to the floor.
The incident went
And Neither remained the same
Believer left a Coward
And H. Love lost her name
I WOULD DO IT ONCE
I would do it once
Because I know Td get away with it
But I wouldn't be able to stop
l^nce I started it
THE ROSE BUD
I am the glistening bud of a rose,
Laden with dew drops, in gentle repose.
I hold a simple glory, mine alone:
How beautiful I shall be when I have grown.
So much promise, so much living yet to do,
I must somehow be patient, await nature's cue.
Until then, I eagerly nurture my potential.
The proper conditions for growth are essential.
The rays of the sun for the warmth of my hue.
Sparkling water for keeping it true.
Fresh soil for the nutrients shaping each petal.
Trust in the process allows peace to settle.
That peace is my patience, a hard thing to hold.
When I quiver with life which longs to unfold!
Molds me to you
As my lips become
More yours than my own
Butjust as our lives
Begin to weld us
We are torn apart
at the seams
ROCKING CHAIR RHEUMATISM
Rocking chair rheumatism
A pallid pajama perception
Of non-existent nostalgia
A jagged juggernaut
Destroying and demolishing
A violent veteran
Cemented at ch ckmate
'Take me to where
your life occurs,"
And she knows- -
frozen in fire
in this way
and she goes.
I am cold, I am dead to your feelings
but you make me this way.
I push you, I force you out of my heart
but you make me strong enough.
In the dark, I long and I cry out for you
but you make me hide it
In the light I am secure, my soul carefree
but then I see
BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH
Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah
The Charlie Brown TeachCT.
I already know this.
Concentration is fading
Mind is searching
awake . . .
Abracadabra! You are a
That's right, now peck the floor
ruffle your feathers
squawk like a chicken!
Now, Alakazam! You are a
There you go, shoot the tongue out
for your dinner
hop around the room
make the girls scream!
And now you are a
DOG! ALLIGATOR! APE! COW!
Ahhh. Now that's better.
Still riding its weekend stallion
Enchanting the peasants
Of the bored. Dark Ages
Was Cheerios and a Coke.
The bounty hunter stood perfectly still in the door-
way, his eyes narrow slits as he stared intently at his newest
target, who was seated quiedy on a bar stool, looking blankly
at the remaining gulp of beer in his near empty mug. The
target was facing away from the door so he didn't see the
bounty hunter come in, nor did he hear the faint footsteps
falling slowly behind him. He was too lost in his own thoughts
to even notice his surroundings.
This very afternoon he had stolen some money from
Lewis. A lot of money. Enough money, he knew, to cause
Lewis to put a contract on his head immediately. If he could
just make it through the night he would be on the first plane out
of New York in the morning and headed to SeatUe. No one
would ever think to look there. No problem, he thought, I just
have to hide out tonight and then I'll be gone. It's a big city,
whoever he hires could never find me before morning, unless .
"Why Greg Jaspar, what are the odds of running into
you here, at this time of night?" came a soft and all too
familiar voice ftx)m behind him
"Dirk, " muttered Greg, slowly turning his bar stool
"You know, just this morning I was saying to myself,
I wonder what Greg's up to. I haven't talked to him in . . ."
"Cut the crap, E>irk. I know why you're here," said
Greg. He had turned completely around and was now staring
up into Dirk's piercing ice blue eyes.
"You stole some money form Lewis, right?"
"Come on, Lewis told 'ya."
"Just answer the question!" shouted Dirk, raising his
voice above little more than a whisper for the first time in the
"All right," replied Dirk, his voice back to its
previous soft pitch. "How much?"
"You already know how. , . "
"BuL . ."
"Two hundred and fifty thousand."
"All right Greg my man, at least you're being honest
You know what I plan to do, so are you coming quietly or are
you going to go in pain?"
'lx)ok. Dirk, I don't want any trouble, you know that
Why don't you come with me?"
"And betray Lewis? He gave me a home when I was
down. He did the same for you. He's been good to us. Why
did you take that money from him?"
"Think about it , Dirk. I served him for five years and
I haven't seen a dime of the money he promised me."
"How much did he promise you?"
"Twenty-five thousand for every hit, just like you.
Come on, man, you know that, we used to be partners."
"Yeah, we were," stated Diik quiedy, remembering
the hits they did as a team. "But now you betrayed Lewis and
he hired me to bring you in alive, and I aim to do so."
"Come on, EHrk, you owe me, remember? I saved
your life when we ran into problems at that hit on Richardson's
Dirk grimaced as the memories flooded through his
mind. It was supposed to be a routine hit on Gary Richardson,
a drug dealing millionare who was in serious debt to Lewis and
refused to pay it off, even after countiess threats of murder.
Dirk and Greg had finally been sent to make good on Lewis's
threats, but Richardson had anticipated the move and had hired
two dozen men to surround his estate.
The two immediately noticed the increased security
and took extreme precaution approaching the mansion. A
guard stationed at the back kitchen door caught a glimpse of
movement out of the side of his right eye and quickly fired a
shot from his rifle that caught Dirk in the right side of his chest
The sound of the shot brought all two dozen men to the back of
the estate and suddenly all hell broke loose.
Greg acted quickly and grabbed Dirk and as much as
dragged him through the bushes they were hiding in into the
stieet behind the estate, somehow managing to climb an eight
foot chain-link fence that marked the start of the private
property of the estate. Outside of the fence, Greg carried Dirk
to their hidden car, helped him in, and drove off, away from
danger. All of this was done with bullets whizzing past their
heads, two striking Greg, one in the lower back and another
grazing the side of his left thigh. None of this slowed Greg
down as his new mission had become saving his best friend's
Dirk had felt deeply indebted to Greg and pledged
that he would pay him back somehow. Over the years, three to
be exact, both hitmen had forgotten about Dirk's pledge, until
"Dirk, remember?" pressed Greg, breaking Dirk's
thoughts,"What do ya say? If it weren't for me, you'd be dead."
Dirk wrestied with the options. Either he went with
Greg and betrayed Lewis, which would mean hiding out for
virtually a lifetime as Lewis hated being lied to and would not
rest until justice was done. However, Dirk's only true posses-
sion was his honor, and he had pledged payback to Greg for
saving his life.
"All right," he said at last "111 go with you. We've
got a long road ahead and you know it's not going to be easy."
"No, it's not," said Greg, "but we got a head start It
should take probably twenty-four hours ior Lewis to realize
that we've disappeared. By then, we'll be in Seatde and already
in hiding. B; she way, thanks."
"Yeah, sure. We'll stay at my place tonight and go to
the airport first thing in the morning. Now, what did you do
with the money?"
"It's in the trunk of my car. It's all in hundreds and
"All right Let's go get it and then ditch your car
"How about the garage just around the comer?"
"That should work. One more thing; from this point
on, Tm in charge."
"All right. Dirk. You'e the boss."
Greg knew that Diik was better fit to run the show
than he way. That one fouled up hit on Richardson's mansion
was the only time that Dirk didn't fulfill his mission. Every
otho* mission that he had been assigned, he fulfilled almost
immediately with no difficulties at all. Everyone around him
respected him and was a little afraid of him. He was well over
six feet tall and built like a rock. His long blonde hair tied back
in a pony tail along with his piercing ice-blue colored eyes,
gave him a menacing look that few would dare to contend
with. But his fenocity in a fight was unparalleled. He had
learned how to protect himself by having to grow up in the
middle of New York City and constantly fighting for his life.
It was especially tough on him, being white in a predominantly
The main reason Greg agreed with Dirk being in
charge was that Diik was very intelligent He wasn't well-
educated but he was extremely street smart He knew how to
handle himself on the streets and that would help them in
hiding from Lewis.
"Well," said Greg, "we better get going. We have to
leavce early tomorrow morning."
'T^ot just yet," said Diric
"We have witnesses."
Greg had completetly forgotten about the other
people in the bar, but Dirk brought them back to his attention.
There were three other customers in the bar to Greg's left and
the bartender behind the bar. All of them had heard their entire
Quickly, Dirk pulled his sawed-off shotgun out of his
trench coat, took aim at the bartender first and fired. The slug
entered through the bartender's left eye and exploded out the
back of his head in a mixture of blood, brains, hair, and bone.
Without hesitation. Dirk pumped the shotgun, turned and shot
the nearest customer in the forehead, knocking him off his bar
stool. Dirk immediately pumped the gun again and shot the
next customer in the side of the head as he tried to run for the
door. When Dirk pumped up and tried to fire at the last
customer, the gun simply clicked. He had used the three slugs
he had left. He threw the gun to the floor and slowly walked
toward his last victim, who was CTOuched down, trembling
under a bar stool.
"Please don't kill me!" he cried when he saw Dirk's
boot land just inches from his face.
"Get up," said Dirk, grabbing the man by his collar
and pulling him out from under the bar stool.
"All right," said the man, quickly getting to his feet
Tlease let me go. I won't tell anyone, I swear."
"I know you won't" said Dirk, bringing his right knee
up, hitting the man hard in the stomach. The man immediately
doubled over in pain and Dirk quickly grabbed his head with
both arms and twisted fiercely. The man's neck snapped
instantly and Dirk let go, dropping his limp body to the floor.
"You enjoy that don't you." said Greg, staring shortly
at each of the four bodies.
"Sure do," said Dirk, picking his shotgun up off the
floor. "Now we can go."
Greg got up from his bar stool and walked to the door
right behind Dirk. He turned at the door and looked one last
time at Dirk's work and mumbled quietly under his
breath,"Good thing he likes this so much because he's gonna'
have a lot of it to do."
He turned back and walked out the door quickly to
carch up with Dirk. The two had to stay even if they were
going to survive life on the run. They were pretty even fw the
time being, but their adventure had only begun.
in a stately manner
amidst the slaughter
of rapid evolution
harem of midnights crown
streets of secrecy
mirrored by the blue candles
An organ playing
in the pub
summa ale smell
with impotent laughter
LEAVE ME BE
just leave me be.
i am content now
to be alone with myself
enjoying the freedom
which has enveloped
my only solace
to be left
with thoughts of
"WHAT ARE YOU STARVING FOR?"
"What are you starving for?" she asked. I told her, and then
she gave me a litde taste and refused me any more.
"What are you craving for?" she asked, I then confessed. She
gave me an even smaller taste and refused me any more.
And I hurt, like those sentenced to spend terminally ill
I spin, wondering when it will stop, and I live in mushroom
fields of punishment, savoring what little I had before torment
BRIDGING THE GAP
Bridging the g^
Between the waters of age
And the moimtains of immaturity
I struggle toward adulthood
Yet continue to wonder
Where teenagerhoood ends
And adulthood begins.
A drop endures
on the brink of the abyss
Poised and prismed
in the sun.
A final moment of
reflective calm- -
Flashback to a
Memories of a
Trapped inside a
more to teach her.
its friends again
To fly with
the fish- -
Walking in the shadows of my mind
I see a light under a locked doa*
Knowing not to go there
Because of the scraping on the floor
Turning left at the crossroad
I see a tunnel of blue haze
Following closely to the wall
I make my way through the maze
Tripping, I see a faded memwy
curled up upon the naked wood
Bending I extend my arm to caress it
but can't touch it if I could
I pass through the tunnnel and slip
in a trickling trailing stream of blood
Rolling Standing Slipping Flopping
I kneel wondering if there will be a flood
Blood smeared across my face
Not knowing which way to ask of grace
What is my fate, will I be saved?
Lost in the shadows I slowly lose my fail
WON MORNING BEYOND EWE
It was a stiff day
virgin sands had snowed through the forests
silence ran blissfully
hiding behind a birds choir
when I turned my head
I slinkied up the stairs
of the hidden altar
The sun was pleasing
and the wind slighdy welcoming
there I sat, in the flesh
momentarily aroused by the grass
parading mushrooms made me a pillow
I was joined by a caterpillar
and the wolf
We talked of today
before yestersday canve
and watched a small show of promiscuous fairies
I choked on my smoke
and they laughed and they teased
I rained just a little
and climbed up a tree
Night showed up
shortly after Dusk left
Gt's hard to get those two together)
we began to sing
and I feel a bit tired
so I excused myself
and to reality retired
THEY IS FRIENDS
They is friends
They is family
They is fools
They always frowning
They is friends
They is family
AS I LOOK IN YOUR EYES
. . AND THE POEMS BECAME SONGS TODAY
. . . and the poems became songs today
On the basement stage.
That break the pandemonium
Of our 3:00 a.m. coffee break
(In which the guitars and amplifiers
Middle fingers to the alcoholics.
As I look in your eyes
I see warmth
As I touch your lips
I see want
As I rub your chest
I see pleasure
As I unzip your pants
I see lunch
RIDICULED AND SCORNED
Ridiculed and scorned
by his Mends,
He leaves the familiars
of his life behind.
A visionary prophet,
entering the smooth
The elders watch him
through the raven's eye.
Observing and guiding
from the sky.
Leave the highway,
the traveled path.
Enter the cave;
youth has past
Melting logs etch
ash into the earth
As smoke drifts up
from the fire's berth.
Curling and weaving
through the misL
Drink from our cup again
and ignore hollow hope.
As this is where
your life begins.
Do not fear
For you are
the chosen one.
You have been prepared
all these years
And now the West
devours the sun.
A man you
these are your trials
The first is ignorance;
if you fail you
are doomed to stupidity
The second is doubt
you must believe
while others call
Th third is fear;
this will try to crush you
but you must persevere
and hold close
what you hold dear.
Return now to your
land and your home.
You are enlightened
You shall stand. . .
aware and alone.
YOU SAY YOU LOVE ME
You say you love me
and you express it
I say I love you
and I express it (I think)
You say you care
and you show it
I say I care (I think)
You say you want to spend your life with me
and you mean it
And I respond the same
and I mean it (I think)
But th^ again I think too much.
You were lost and alone,
I found you
And healed you
with salve from my heart
Bandaged you with love
on the way to recovery-
yourself, and I
with an empty
First Aid Box
OVERHEARD IN A CORNFIELD
Rouging and detasseling are two parts of a summer
job that most kids abhor. But with the right coworkers and a
sense of humor, it can be entertaining. The work itself is
brainless- -walk back and forth through a cornfield, first cutting
out com that is the wrong hybrid (rouges) and then following
the crews of students who pull tassels from the four female
Basically there were four groups of woricers: high
school girls, high school studs, the little guys, and everyone
else. The high school girls were good workers for the most
part They were good whiners too. It was always too hot, or
too dry, or too dusty, too far/too close to lunchtime, too close to
quitting time, too early, too late, too cold, and so on. This was
only when conversation lagged among them, which thankfully
wasn't too often.
Of all the high school girls who complained and
worked. Heather was the most fun to listen to. If there wasn't a
Heather-ism for the day, it was a let down. Heather was a
space cadet She was tall, very pretty, a basketball player, and
honor roll student and a space cadet She professed to liking
"That one singer with red hair, you know, the really hot
looking one" (Rick Astley was the assumption). And was
working "So I can paint my Grandma's car. She's going to sell
it to me real cheap, but I don't like the color. It's brown right
now. What kind is it? It's brown. Chevrolet? It's brown.
How many doors does it have? I don't know, it's brown.
Hatchback? It's brown. But I don't like it brown. I want to get
it painted that one color. It's kind of purple, but not really.
You know, its, well, its kind of purple, but not really. Rust?
No, that's not it Magenta, no that's too bright It's kind of
purple, but not really. Maroon! Yeah, kind of like that , but not
really. There's anothername for that color. Burgimdy! Yeah,
that's it! Burgundy. You know, it's kind of purple, but not
really." That wonderful dialogue with Heather led to the
Heather-ism alert and immortalized Heather forever in the
eyes of summer detasselers. The phrase was "kind of, but not
really" . It could apply to weather- -kind of cloudy, but not
really, kind of sunny, but not really, kind of cold, but not
really; time- - kind of late, but not really; and any otho- place
you could think of. Its best usage came in sarcasm, as in when
something was definitely one way, and you "kind of , but not
really"ed it for example, after a water fight on the bus, the bus
was kind of wet but not really, as the water streamed out of the
front door. The phrase actually outlasted Heather's employ-
ment She quit after working only one summer claiming that
flipping burgers at McDonald's for a whole summer was easio"
than walking in a cornfield for the same money for four weeks.
Kind of, but not really.
Heather had other contributions in her only summer
of detasseling, however. One day we were treated to a
description of the "ideal date". Now Heather was a sophmore
in high school at the time, and the emphasis is obviously on the
cover and not the contents.
"First he'd have green eyes, long brown hair, a
diamond earring, and a leather jacket He'd pick me up in his
convertible and tell my parents we were going to a movie.
Then we'd drive to Chicago and go shopping at Water Tower.
He'd buy me things and we'd eat at the Hard Rock Cafe and
we'd be home by midnight so my parents would never even
know." The town in which Heather lives is at least two hours
form Water Tower and Hard Rock, kind of an impossible
drive, but not really. When questioned as to the details of this .
date, it was soon apparent that the date had no personality
requirements whatsoever. I guess that is one of the perils of
being a pretty, popular, high school sophmore. Looks and
appearances are the center of reality.
Not far from the realm of Heather was Kenton who
was a seventh grader, with roughly more common sense than
Heather. His favorite passage of time consisted of singing
"There's Kathy who's lived most everywhere, from Zanzibar, to
Beikely Square, while Patty's only seen the sights a girl can see
fi-om Brooklyn Heights, what a crazy pair. But they're cousins,
identical cousins don't you know, they look alike, they walk
alike, sometimes they even talk alike, you could lose your
mind, 'cause they're cousins, they're two of a kind." This theme
song mania, Patty Duke Show in this example, could easily
spread to GiUigan's Island, The Brady Bunch, or whatever
other Nickelodeon reruns Kenton had watched the night
before. This is an entertaining way to pass the time with little
or no brain effort
Kenton also had devised a plan on how to get back at
someone you are mad at There are three stages. The first time
they bother you, you can yell back at them. The second time,
make a sign that says "Kick Me" and tape it on their back. And
then, if they make you really mad, you spray paint "Elvis is
Alive!" on their car.
But thCTC are higher levels of intelligence that seek a
reprise from detasseling. Recreational thinking, of a sort
games that exercise your brain but let you keep your job in
mind. You don't want to drift too far, ot you won't get your job
done right John, the master of the 32 ACT, would try to solve
all of the world's problems in one aftanoon or one cornfield,
whichever was smaller. This led to redoing some of his rows,
because the attention he paid to his job was minimal.
To divert his mind and exercise our own, we created
mind games. The first was a singing game, to put an end to
Patty Duke Show theme song. You sing one song until you get
to a word that is the beginning of a line to another song. Fot
example: "Here we come , walkin' down the street
get the funniest looks from
everyone we meet . ."
"Meet me in St Louis, Louis. . . "
"Louie, Louie, oh yeah,
I think I love you so. . . "
"Sew, a needle pulling thread.
La, a note to follow sew. . . "
OVERHEARD IN A CORNFIELD, continued
"So long, we sure had a good time. . . "
"Time for me to fly. . . "
and so on. If you got stuck, you completed the last song,
andstarted over with a new song. This would hopefully lead to
a new train of song lines It is harder that it first appears, and
worics better with more people playing. During good sessions,
it got so tht the first one to fdl in the line had the line we sang.
The other game was originated by the thinking guru
himself, John. One day , out of the blue, he asks, "Have you
ever seen an Ethiopian tangerine?" He got some funny looks,
but then when he pointed out that he had just used Ethiopia in a
sentence, we decided to see how many African and Middle
Eastern countries we could use in sentences on normal
conversation. As a sampling:
You can't run any faster, can ya? Kenya!
At evCTy school dance, I can rock and roll all night
I was late this morning, so I ran to catch up. Iran!
Hey, that cashier's wrong! He gypped me 30 cents.
What did you have for breakfast?" OJ and cereal.
If you were in the Mediterranean, you would have, to
the north, Europe, and to the south, Africa. South Africa!
There was this Tennessee mountain family who had a
huge tree in their yard. One summer it blew over in a storm.
They had to get rid of the stump. They tried chopping, sawing,
digging, burning, but it wouldn't budge. Finally one of their
cousins suggested using the mule to pull while the men pushed
from the other side. They thought about it and the Pa said,
"Well, we have tried everything else, let's all try it Jimbo's
Is that artificial whipping cream" No, ma'am. It's real
as can be. Israel!
Mom, can I take your car? I know that car is hers, but
I'm mad at Dad's car. Madagascar!
Do you remember our old babysittCT? Her name was
,um,Libby! Libbywhat? Libby, um, Libby ah, Libby er,
Mmmm, I'll always love ice cream. Malawi!
And so on. Mr. Foster, the boss, was amazed by this
game. He's a high school history teacher who leads rouging
and detasseling crews over the summer. He couldn't believe
that students would actually want to think and pursue knowl-
edge over the summer like that He was impressed, and
actually contributed Zimbabwe to the African counry hunt
Mr. Foster himself was another source of quotations
and amusement His mother-in-law baby sat for his children
during the day, and they would ride down with the crew and
then get dropped off at their Grandma's house. One day there
was a difference in opinion with his mother-in-law regarding
the children. When he finally reappeared in the field, he said to
the boys, "When you find that wonderful girl you want to
before you even ask her, make sure her mother id dead!" This
is apparently the best way to avoid differences in opinion. He
even tried to contribute a thinking game to our repetoire. One
day, John was moving raher slowly, and looking confused.
Mr. Foster told him, "John, let's get moving there. You know
what to do, don't you, or did you just fall off the potato truck?
No, how IxDut just fell off the turnip truck? Do you like it?
Just fell off the turnip truck. I just made that up." From there,
it progressed. "C'mon guys, let's get the show on the road.
Hey! The show on the road. Do you like it? I just made that
"Wait wait let the kids get going first Don't put the
cart before the horse. Hey- -the cart before the horse. Do you
like it? I just made that up."
So these are snippets of conversations and thoughts
you can overhear in a cornfield. It is an experience you can
learn from, or not You can exercise your mind, or let it get
stagnant and stale. Heather and her friends didn't return the
next year, and told all of their friends not to apply for the job.
It was too hard for them apparently. Heather quit cross country
and became a football cheerleader the next fall. In the
detasseling circles, the decision was attributed to brain atrophy.
Kenton came back, and even tried rouging the next
summCT. It is faster walking, though, and more of it and
Kenton didn't last the whole time He did make an encore
appearance in the detasseling crews, however. Being a
freshaman had somehow affected him, though, and he spent
more time trying to impress Jennifer than singing Patty Duke's
theme song. From that aspect the change wasn't all bad.
Mr. Forster is still detasseling, and teaching history.
He detassels to make extra money for himself over the
summer, and creates jobs for a number of high school and
junior high school students in the area He still has a mother-
There will always be the Heathers and the Kentons to
create the woricers in a detasseling crew. They come and go.
But the thinkers, those who dare to be different and challenge
themselves, they might not return.
The thinking group, (John, Karl, Jane and Ann), have
gone their separate ways, although they still get together from
time to time and pull out the encyclopedias from time to time
to practice. John applies his talents to the physics and com-
putCT departments at North Park College, and is hoping to
intern at U of Va. next summer, so he won't be eating any
Ethiopian tangerines. Jane is practicing on her kindergarten
students and her frosh-soph girls basketball team, who
understand a little better. She might be back to continue the
tradition. Karl will graduate from high school this year and
return to be the number one sidekick for Mr. Forster. And
Ann, well, I still play those same thinking games, but somehow
they just don't have the same effect as they did that summer in
Into the blood
One must dive
Treading the waters of suicide
Amongst the H.I.V.
Pinch your nose.
And sink to the bottom
Of the unsupervised pool
Thick with disease.
I'VE SEEN HER MOAN
She's the skin of a corpse
and a pale mane
silent are her lips (yet)
and i expect vapor when she speaks
I've met her eyes
I watch for them in the corridor
on my early days
But it's only a dream
a day dream at most
a quick vision of ecstasy
one in a thousand
Remember that moon-lit night
walking in the grass
looking toward the sky
you were so sad
you told me all your problems
lying side by side
Remember that Saturday afternoon
we lay on my bed and listened to tunes
we were so happy so innocently
pretending to fall in and out of sleep
Remember the times Fve made you smile
you and your mom or boyfriend had a fight
i just talked and made you forget
you told me i always made you feel better
Rememeber those times when i'm far away
I need to fmd someone to help me escape
I WAIT WTTH HOPE
I wait with hope.
I pray with patience.
I sob with sorrow.
The lonely river grows quieter still.
There is no gentle sun of yesterday.
There are no children playing, no laughing, no smiles.
No hum of cars whizzing by the cities.
I am angry
There is no world,
and it is my fault
AS I LOOK AROUND
As I look around
At my well-known world
It seems very different-
That precious sunset
That favorite tree
The road I travel
Each day to school
They're becoming strangers.
Road, sunset, tree
I have seen all my life
Beckoned me onward
Morning, noon, night
But as months pass of late
A traveler Tve become
Now I am
The unwelcomed one
SPEAK WITHOUT A THOUGHT TO
Speak without a thought to
Hear without a mind to
Listen without a plan to
Make it if you can.
Melvin's eyelids had become cinder blocks on his face. It was
all he could do to keep them up. He hadn't slept in days. His
course load at the Junior College had become too much. Math,
English 102, Speech, History, Astronomy and Philosopohy
each played their parts in depriving him of sleep.
He rushed himself to the men's room between classes. The
thought of sitting on the throne with no one to call his attention
overwhelmed him. As he lowered his trousers and eased
himself on the seat, he noticed the abundant markings on the
walls of the stall. To his right, a cartoon of Barney Rubble
holding an electric guitar was drawn in magic marker. "Tom
Janek is Jimi Hendrix reborn" was inscribed below. On the
back of the door, "Chris 'Shaggy' Fordonski was here" was
engraved in the flaking brown decrq)it paint
"Steev loves Tracy forever and always" was declared just
above the paper rack in what appeared to be purple sharpie
Melvin instandy developed insomnia. The sight of these
feeble-minded attempts at humor and declarations of respect
infuriated him. The basic thought of anyone defacing a poor,
defenseless toilet-stall wall allowed him to do something he
had never permitted himself to do. He tapped into his God-
given supernatural powers and became. . . "The Washroom
Warrior"! In an instant he was clad in the washroom nurtured
Superhero on the nineties. With a toilet-paper roll dispenser
suit of armor, and the ability to hurl atomic Charmin rolls at
unsuspecting vandals, the Washroom Warrior was prepared to
meet and defeat any villian. None too soon did his opportunity
arise. From the next stall, the aroma and obnoxious squeak of
p)ermanent maiicer invaded his senses. The Washoom Warrior
dramatically burst from his Stall Headquarters and blasted
through the door of the neighboring bowel-movement sanctu-
But, for the first time in Melvin's Washroom Warrior career, he
underestimated the enemy. This time the offender wasn't just
some annoying frat boy. This time it was HIM. . . "Graffiti
Man". And before our hero could unleash his atomic toilet
paper rolls, he was launched backwards by Graffiti Man's
permanent marker laser gun.
He felt himself being pjropelled backwards until finally, he felt
a mighty thud.
Melvin raised his head to realize he had fallen asleep on the
John again. And to make matters worse, he was 15 minutes
late for Speech. He hiked up his drawers, gathered his books,
and before leaving, inscribed his own words of wisdom on the
"Beware of the Washroom Warrior."
FAR AWAY FRIEND
When I think of the love you give to me,
So simple, undying and true.
My fears run and hide, I know Tm free,
I want to be cIosct to you.
I've come to trust, I miss you so much.
I know the miles can't keep us apart
I need to hear your voice and feel your touch
Though I know we're heart to heart
I feel you out there listening.
Dear friend, you must know it's trxie
Even when my tears are glistening,
I know I can dq)end on you.
If today were forever
I'd be with you
If time was aligned
get lost with me in the garden
expose your dreams
perhaps we could kiss
BITTEN BY THE SNAKE
Bitten by the snake
Of a self-centered male
And without mistake.
Banished by the king
In my surrogate iream
A witch-like zephyr
Following. . ,
BLOWING HARDER AND HARDER
Blowing harder and harder
The wind slices into my face
Leaving it brittle and aged
Making me seem older
And yet preparing me
for my unavoidable fiiture.
No, you can't have it!
You're taking that, aren't you?
They warned me,
they told me this would happen.
I nevCT thought . .
I nevCT believed. . .
God, why me?
My head is spinning.
My stomach. . . Oh, God!
Oh, God, why me?
Take my leg,
take my hair,
ravage my body.
But, damn you,
you. . . will. . . not . . take. . . my. . . life!
I will live.
Tear out the nails
Of a crucified reality.
And sing with the lizards
Of Egyptian melodies
JUST FOR YOU, MY SWEET
He descened the stairecase like a dancer, each foot
barely touching the steps below him. He whistled to himself as
best he could, for it was common knowledge that his lips could
hardly make enough noise to register to the human ear as a
whistle, but it was music to him all the same. The spirit within
the body was on a psychological high, induced by some logic
that the man was sure no other would want to comprehend.
The small and slender form of the young man entered
the darkness of the dining room below, a darkness almost so
severe that it missed matching the color of his suit by half a
shade. In this absence of light a touch of pallor met with an
identical dot of white and struck a match, revealing a face atop
the ebony clad figure. The face smiled while a hand below lit a
candle on the table. He moved quickly to the kitchen.
The phone; the number, an answer; she was home.
"Hello?" Click. All the information he needed was
had. The smile continued as if it would not stop until the face
it slashed was split in two.
Thin fingers reached to an opposite wrist to check the
time on a watch that had been broken for almost a year. The
smile continued. "Right on schedule."
The hand that came from the wrist with the watch
pored the smile some wine; the lips tasted and parted to show
small white teeth to the daikness.
The watch again was consulted for its faulty diagno-
"Depart, we shall Depart, we must"
The thin figure danced its way to a refigeratw,
opening its doOT with a gracefxil movement of one arm. Milk,
bread, cheese, pie, eggs- - these were not the things he sought
"Ahhh." A dozen black roses, preserved by the cold
in a proper state of decay.
The roses were swept up by slender fingers and
placed with care beneath a waiting arm, while the other arm
reached up to correct a crooked tie. When the correcting arm
was free it proceeded to check one more item; it moved slowly
to the left breast pocket inside the jacket, where the syringe
rested. A tool waiting for a task, it still rested as such. The lips
widened and blew out the candle on the table, while the smile
continued to cut across the pale oval that was the young man's
"Are we ready?" asked a melodious voice of the
darkness. The darkness did not respond. "Good! Then we
The lips parted once again to whisde, and this time
they proved to be successful in their task. An old piece of
classical music came fcHth from within the thin fcMm, some-
thing from Gounod. A march: a funeral march, for dancers
made of wood, controlled by string. The funeral march of a
in my heart
so sharp and
has faded into
i've begun to
that i ever
what i wouldn't
for then at least
LET'S BUILD SOMETHING
Let's build something- - ■
Let's see how sharp and
precise comers can be
Let's now make three.
One up and
Two up and
Now we are gods
Out of dirt we have
bom a nation.
as a storm gathers
like a well of rats
It rapes my soul
licking my brain
feeling so cold
It looks in my eyes
you begged for it
you never learn
I cmmple to the floor
ripping at my ears
inviting the roars
with bloody tears
I AM NOT A DEMANDING PERSON
I am not a demanding person
Shut up and listen!
I don't ask too much of people.
I don't care how busy you are!
I do so much for people
Get it yourself!
I am supportive
You're on your own!
I am respectful
What's this in your drawer?!
I am sensitive
Lose some weight!
and I am not selfish.
I come first!
So please, because I love you
I can't stand you!
Do this one little favor
Add it to the list!
and stay home tonight with me.
Get out of my house!
A GHOST STORY
Some people will never believe. So maybe I heard it
from a friend of a friend. But listening to his story gave me the
chills. Maybe I should correct myself; it really was not a story.
It did not really have a plot or theme or even an ending. How
can something you cannot explain come in a neat little package
with a red bow on top? Anyway, just sit back. . . oh, watch
your back. . . and see what happens.
Jason was late for school and he still had to pick up
his girlfriend on the way. Running out the door hw grabbed his
bag and keys and yelled bye to his mother.
Jason was mad as he glanced at his watch. If he was
late to school again he was going to get detentions.
Jason pulled into his girlfriend's driveway at 8: 18
according to the clock on his dashboard. He had a ten minute
drive to school plus he needed to go to his locker before his
first class which started at 8:30. Needless to say, he was
pressed for time. As he slammed both palms on the horn he
wondered why she was always late, especially when he was in
Impatiently tapping on the steering wheel, Jason
glanced to his left. About two blocks down the road he saw an
extraordinary tall man in a black suit wearing a top hat walking
slowly toward him. Since he was in such a hurry, Jason was
not really paying attention and the sight did not register until he
was already looking toward the house.
Confused, Jason looked quickly back to his left, but
he did not see the man. It was a little foggy so the thought he
could have imagined the man After all, it could have been
somebody out to get the newsp^)er.
Jason glanced at the clock on the dash. It read 8: 19.
He screamed in frustration and threw his head back sighing
loudly. As he lifted his head he glanced in his rear view mirror
In the saw a strangely tall man in a black suit wearing a top hat
walking slowly past his car. Every hair on Jason's body stood
straight up. Curling his toes tight and squeezing his eyes shut
he thought that there was no possible way the man could have
been two blocks down the road one second, then right behind
him the next second.
Opening his eyes, Jason looked in his rear view
minor. Nothing. Slowly he relaxed.
The front door finally opened and Jason's girlfriend
bounded out to the car. He glanced at the clock again. It still
read 8: 19. As his girlfriend grabbed the door handle Jason
looked at her. Past her, about two blocks down the road Jason
saw a tall man in a black suit wearing a top hat walking slowly
down the road.
Jason's girlfriend asked him what was wrong. "You
look like you'vejust seen a ghost," she said.
my close one
close as you can be
not far now
Scream across a foreign earth
THE COVERS ENFOLD ME
The covers enfold me
In their mauvish warmth
I begin snuggling down
with Pooh Bear
As I absorb the comfort
my blankets supply
Together Pooh and I
Review all that has happened today
While we begin our silent walk
Uninspired by truly uninspiring words, I wrote nothing and it
was the best thing I never wrote.
AS I DRANK WITH THE ALBATROSS
As I drank with the albatross
And danced with the wind
I spied a leaf dragon
All brown and sharp finned
He joined in our dance
As we spun him round 'n round
Moving up from Rio
All the way to Puget Sound
But the wind disappeared
And took along the dragon
The albatross took his drinks
And left his empty flagon
So I sat upon the beach
On the coast of Puget Sound
The waves slapped up upon my toes
And no one was around
But then the waves spoke to me
And told me "Hey come swim!"
So I ran along the waterfront
And finally I jumped in
"Come in and swim and frolic and play"
The water said to me
"Follow the current, the ebb and flow
Out to the open sea"
So away I swam and felt a change
My body began to squish
My arms pulled in, I sprouted gills
I was turning into a fish!
Now swimming with my pointed tail
My red gills and my scales
I was swimming ever deq)er
And looking for the whales
I quickly heard their singing
And asked if I could go
Join in their ceaseless melody
That rises from below
They said "Yes, please join us do
But do not dive too icep
f r if we do we cannot breathe
And would begin an endless sleep"
I quickly joined their chorus
But then I dove too deep
And began to understand
Their neverending sleep
"Run back to the land"
The nautilus did say
So I spun around, and reached up
To the beach now where I lay
I shuddered and I twisted
And opened my eyes to light
All curled up in my childhood bed
Oh my goodness what a night!
Sunlight and shadows on the
wall of the room
fear of the unknown, fear of the known
smell of incense, patchouli, and wine
red wine, so red
like the blood dripping
from your neck onto my lips
to become one, each into the other
one body, one blood
relent, commit, transmit
hot waves of molten passion
burning, rushing up so fast
fast to capture you, to tr^ your soul
taking you into the realm of fear
the realm of utter, complete beauty
into the sunlight and shadows on the
wall of the room
A vast web
of interlocking words
scurries and weaves
seeking a new mind:
Patiently waiting to explode
once again with success.
MODERN GAZE BLAZING
I STAND WITH MY TOES IN THE SAND
Modem gaze blazing.
Promiscuous, sumptous intelligence
Homy prehistoric idiocy
Clubbing the head
Pulling the hair
SOMEONE, PLEASE, LISTEN
What am I to do?
Someone, please, help me.
But no one listens, no one cares
or they just choose not to see.
My soul is tearing apart,
the pain I cannot bear.
As I hold the knife above ny heart,
I know my end is near.
But I hesitate for just a moment
to see anyone care.
Np one steps forward to stop me
as my heart begins to tear.
I wonder why people can't even see
what's right before their eyes.
They never knew, they never saw
until the last good-byes.
Maybe now they'll listen
to a message so very clear,
written in blood shed by my hands
for the world to hear.
I stand with my toes in the sand,
letting the wind gently flow
through my nakedness.
I feel the sun gazing upon me
and warming my every pore.
A cool wave splashes upon me
and soothes my body
sending a gentle chill
I open myself
toward the heavens
a symphony of clouds
massaging my soul.
I am playfully tumulted
through the sky
until the great west wind
holds me up to the world
and the heavens cry out
in thunderous splendor.
I am slowly
Gently and carefully
being carried down.
I rest on the sand,
held by the arms of the earth.
MOTHER OF ALL
Daughter of the sacred gates
Sister of the serpent song
The princess of reptilian silk
Heiress of the mwbid illusion
Queen of the slow evolution
Succubus of the carnal night
Crimson siren of the black sea
Goddess of the wicked procreation
Seductress of the tempting wind
Whore of the innocent religion
Her majestic majesty
on edible erotica
clouded my world
under my skin
green and grotesque
about in my
on this dazed day
GREEN AND RED
Standing proudly on the child's rock
And they scream hgh falsetto
Torches in hand.
Spitting their arrows.
Catapulting their pubertal anger
At the pristine
of silvery onyx
stealing the last
the hooded shadow
by believing children
With proud purpose
into nothing. . .
neither remembmng. . .
nor knowing. . .
the con artist
MOSTLY FOR JULIAN
Although she laid down to sleep hours ago, she is still awake,
roll to side, wondering. The bed is cold widiout him, and so
big; like walking in a dark, unfamiliar room without a clue.
Several times she had forgotten, and reached out to touch him,
to know the security of his presence.
That was not to be found.
She lay on her back, her eyes searching for the ceiling and her
ears waiting for the sound of his breath.
Finally, she wrapped herself in her robe, and tip-toed down the
stairs in to the even daricer daikness. She was SQ lonely.
In the kitchen, almost to the telephone, she turned down a
hallway to her right She q)ened the dow slowly and crept in
with the silence of a veteran cat burglar. Then, she lay down
on the floor of the baby's new bedroom, where she could hear
him breathe, where she knew she could count on security, and
where she slept for the rest of the night, until his morning cries
You were never my inspiration.
In fact you depressed me
making my thoughts into nightmares
walking across my mind
as if on glass
and hoping to shatter it
along with my dreams
And if you touched me
I would try not to think of it
since your caress
was that of sandpaper
across my teeth
And your eyes
horn too much sleep
but a stain
IN A WAY
upon my vision
and yow stagnant breath
I your mildewed clothes
would get the hell away
One day. . .
maybe you'll show me the way
One hour. . .
maybe Fll give you a flower
In all of my past
I have never felt
Even now. . .
... I am left
It saddens me
eye in eye
When I look to the floor
Stumble over words
Never believing a feeling
It could have been
a thousand times-
it never was
a thousand more
Before and now
It is just my part
in every direction
to lose my heart
Beckonings seem by far
Celery crunch of gravel
muted secrets whispers.
Anguish from the bottom
"I missed her!"
the man awaits
wisps of grey
loss of day.
TRIBE OF INSOLENCE
Tribe of insolence
Beating pounding wartime drums
Of rebellious pestilence
SnK>king smoldering pipes of malignity
Polluting their identity